SHF UKAC 13cm 25-April-2017

I managed 16 contacts using the 2W from the SG-Labs transverter to the 40 el Wimo yagi antenna, 890 points.

Unfortunately I lost my contact points for Mike G8CUL as when I entered his 519 report to me, it went in as 551 as the logger puts a 5 in by default & I typed a 5 in anyway. I wish it didn’t do this. It dosn’t take long to type a 5 in and it would help me to avoid errors. In spite of checking, I failed to spot the error. Then again, it’s only a contest!

John G3XDY was my best DX at 223 km, in flat conditions. My more distant contacts were all using morse code (CW).


23-April-2017 Low Bands contest

This was the first contest for the SG-labs transverter, blasting out its 2W. I was pleasantly surprised to get over 300km into JO01 square to reach Phil G0JBA.

Usually I can work Jon GM4JTJ on 23cm, but I could not hear him on 13cm, nor any other Scottish stations.

Martyn G3UKV is a difficult direction for me, but we completed a contact using CW/morse code.

I am impressed with the SG-labs transverter. It is a good route onto the 13cm band.

On 23cm, my best DX was Maurice F6DKW, SW of Paris. I don’t seem to have upset the 23cm yagi by running a coax cable through it.

13cm SG-Labs transverter

I’m experimenting with an SG-Labs transverter from Hristiyan LZ5HP, Bulgaria. The IF for this is 70cm & the local oscillator may be set to 1870, 1886, 1888 or 1968 MHz by  jumpers 1 and 2. I’ve selected 1888 MHz, so 1888 + 432 = 2320MHz.

It defaults to VOX mode, so when power is sensed, it automatically switches to transmit. It has a built-in antenna relay, but this may be switched out in order to add an external relay for a pre-amp and/or linear amp.

I’ve set the transverter’s power pot to accept 2.5W from the FT-817.

In order to be able to mount the transverter on the aerial pole, I’ve added some monitor wires to permit remote control/monitoring from the operating position:

  1. “I/P” red LED
    •  shows I/P power too high, off when power I/P is OK,
    •  blinking when external reference oscillator is unlocked
    •  on for 3s on switch-on
  2. “I/P” green LED – shows green when power I/P is correct
  3. “FWD” SWR      – to feed a high-impedance meter
  4. “REV” SWR        – similar, but for reverse power
  5. PTT                      – via the phono jack
  6. SEQ                      – to give an indication of when transmitting

The other cables up to the transverter supply 13.8V DC, 10 MHz reference and the 70cm IF. I’ve used double-screened RG223U coax for the IF. The cable umbilical is covered in insulating tape to protect it from UV light damage. 1.5 m of Westflex 103 (from WH Westlake) coax connects to the 34 element Wimo yagi. The yagi is usually mounted behind the reflector, but I’ve mounted it from underneath in order to better physically balance it.

The protective box is from Toolstation. This and the Wimo yagi are mounted to a “jockey” fibreglass pole which is strapped to the existing pole with Shelley clamps from Blake UK, Rutland Road, Sheffield. So the 13cm antenna sits right on the top; the transverter box sits a little way down the pole where I can get at it. I’m hoping the coax doesn’t upset the 23cm Wimo which it passes through.

So far, I haven’t heard any beacons from here on 13cm (except GB3ZME occasionally via aircraft scatter), so thanks go to Trevor M0TWS for his help in testing across town.

26-November-2019 – my first contact on the 2.30 GHz NoV band

13cm upgrade – SG-Labs Rx/Tx and “Split Mode”